Sesil Karatancheva is the Bulgarian wonderkid of professional tennis. She was born on August 8, 1989 in Sofia. Raised in a sports family, her father was Bulgarian National Champion in rowing and her mother was also Bulgarian National Champion, but in volleyball. Trained at the prominent tennis school of Nicholas Bollettieri, Sesil Karatancheva made her debut in professional tennis at the age of 14, in 2003. The same year she won 3 ITF (International Tennis Federation) titles, the first one in Volos, Greece, where she eliminated the number 1, 2 and 3 seeds on her way to the title. In 2004 she won the French Open tournament (Roland-Garros) for girls, but 2005 was her breakthrough year. Between 2004 and 2005 she jumped 491 places in the WTA list to go to number 35 in the world at the age of sixteen. On her way to this standing she had some stunning victories e.g. against the former world number one Venus Williams in the third round of Roland-Garros in 2005. In the same tournament she reached the quarterfinals to become the youngest female tennis player to reach the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam tournament after Marina Hingis in 1996; Sesil was 15 years and 10 months old. The same year, 2005, she made it to the second rounds of Wimbledon and the US Open.
On January 11, 2006, Sesil Karatancheva is banned from the big tennis for two years after giving two consecutive positive drug tests for nandrolone. She was also fined 290,000 USD, or all the money that she has won in her professional career. She has not played any matches in 2006 and 2007 due to her ban and is now eagerly anticipating her return on the court and reaching at least the 35th position again in the WTA list. The tennis world is looking at Sesil Karatancheva now, two months prior to her return in the big tennis. There has been serious interest shown in her prior to her return for she is a central theme in many different sports newspapers and magazines across the world. According to the rules of the World Tennis Association and the opportunities given by it, it has been estimated that it is absolutely possible for a tennis player to reach a position in the first 100 for 5 months, if she is winning of course. Only the future will show what will happen, but for a tennis player at her rank, it is out of the question that soon Sesil Karatancheva will be one of the best female tennis players in the world.